LAST Saturday at Dale saw the largest turnout in a single competition for a few years when 93 players took part in the Hay & Co Buildbase Open.
This is always a popular event for players with Buildbase staff laying on a barbecue and beer tent followed by a raffle for charity, with a good night usually following in the clubhouse.
Scoring was tough with a strong south easterly wind punishing any bad shots. With the rough now several feet high in places there were several horror stories of players racking up double figures on certain holes. Play was slow at times as a result and several players had to pay up the £5 donation to charity for not returning a card.
One player who managed to avoid any such disasters was Steven Henry who set a formidable target of net 63. His round of 87, less 24, looked like it would be hard to beat given the blustery conditions.
The only player who did come anywhere near to this target was James Ramsay whose 78 (net 65) would give him second place. James has reduced his handicap several times this year and can count himself unlucky not to take first place this time round. Third in the handicap was Paul Foster with 80 (net 68).
First place in the scratch was taken by Stuart Fox with a timely return to form, his excellent 72 enough to take the trophy by just one shot. Ernie Smith came in with a fine 73 but had to settle for second place, while Shetland Open winner Tom Simpson continued his fine run with a 75 to take third place by virtue of a better back nine from Alan Harcus.
Ernie Smith also won a prize for longest drive on the 13th and Marc Henry was nearest the pin on the second.
Buildbase branch manager Jim Moar presented the prizes to the winners and Graham McAllister conducted the raffle which, along with the competition entries, meant the total raised on the day was in excess of £1,500 for charity, which will go to MacMillan Cancer Support. There were some excellent prizes with Stevie Tulloch winning the star prize of TV/DVD player.
Club captain Fox thanked Hay & Co. Buildbase for the continued sponsorship over the years and thanked the staff for making the day such a success.
The event was also the sixth qualifying event for next year’s island games team with Alan Harcus currently leading the points table. He is now far enough ahead to guarantee a place in the team while Jordan Leask, Tom Simpson and Ernie Smith currently hold the other qualifying places. Just outside the top four are Stuart Anderson and Ross Chisholm and with two qualifying competitions left there are still enough points available for the top places to change.
The Bond Cup was won by George Leask with an excellent score of 71 (net 63) with Roy Harcus at last showing some form to take second place with a round of 89 (net 65). Adrian Henderson took first place in the DITT Cup with a fine score of 74 (net 65) with Jim Teale finishing second with 81 (net 66).
Paul Nicol’s 82 (net 64) was enough to take first place in last week’s Wednesday sweepstake. Second was Gavin Philip with 77 (net 65) and third was Ian Leask with 78 (net 65). The win gave Nicol enough points to draw level at the top of the Summer League with Chris Conboy on 20, although Conboy still leads by virtue of more first place finishes. Ian Sandilands and Gary Wiseman are close behind on 16 with Tom Simpson on 15 and Ian Leask on 14.
A win in the final Summer League competition from any of these players could see Conboy toppled from the top spot he has held since winning two competitions early in the year.
Tomorrow sees a new competition on the golfing calendar with the InterSport Trophy while on Sunday the August Medal competition will take place.